What Else Happened? Round Four 2017
The Plus500 Brumbies managed their second straight win last weekend, defeating local rivals the Waratahs 28-12 at Allianz Stadium in Sydney. There was plenty of other action around Super Rugby as well, let’s take a look at what else happened.
CRUSADERS 33 BLUES 24
The Crusaders hosted the Blues at AMI Stadium, hoping to keep their undefeated record intact. Like the past two games the Crusaders started out slowly, the Blues running out to a dominant 21-5 halftime lead thanks to some inspiring play and a great try by Augustine Pulu.
The Blues extended their lead with a penalty goal early in the second half but as we’ve seen through the early parts of the season you can never count the Crusaders out. The boys from Christchurch answered with four tries and 28 straight points to come away with their third incredible comeback in as many weeks, defeating the Blue 33-24.
REBELS 14 CHIEFS 27
The bottom of the ladder Melbourne Rebels hosted the Chiefs, hoping that last week’s bye would bring them some much needed energy. The first half was a slogfest, neither side able to put a dent in the others defence. The Chiefs took a 7-3 lead into the break thanks to an innocuous try to Dominic Bird.
The Rebels started the second half well, Rugby League convert Marika Koroibete scoring his first try for his new club to give them an 8-7 lead. After a Rebels penalty extended their lead to 11-7 the Chiefs kicked into gear, the visitors scoring three straight tries to come away with a 27-14 bonus point victory.
BULLS 34 SUNWOLVES 21
The Bulls hosted the Sunwolves in Pretoria, hoping that a big win over the visitors would kick start their season after some early mixed results. The first half was an extremely tight affair, the Bulls scoring two tries to the hosts one but penalties meant the game was tight with the hosts leading 17-14.
Early in the second half the game looked to have been turned on its head, Bulls flanker Renaldo Bothma was red carded for a dangerous high tackle on Sunwolves skipper Ed Quirk. Despite being a man down the Bulls rallied, the home team scoring the next two tries of the match and surviving for a 34-21 victory.
HURRICANES 41 HIGHLANDERS 15
The last two Super Rugby champions met in Wellington on Saturday night, the Hurricanes hosting the Highlanders in what looked like it would become the match of the weekend.
Unfortunately for spectators the game never reached any dizzying heights. The Highlanders, who had already been decimated by injury, lost Malakai Fekitoa early on to a head injury and never recovered. The Hurricanes ran in seven tries to two, winning the game 41-15 in what can only be described as a dominant performance.
LIONS 44 REDS 14
The Reds travelled to Johannesburg to take on an in-form Lions team at Ellis Park. It was a one-sided fixture from the beginning, The Lions rushing out to a 15-0 halftime lead which could’ve easily been more.
After Eto Nabuli was sent to the bin for a professional foul early in the second half the Reds looked to be in even more trouble. From the ensuing penalty the Lions scored and Reds flyhalf Quade Cooper was red carded for a dangerous high tackle, dropping his team to 13 men.
The Lions piled on the points from there on in, shooting out to a 39-0 lead including four tries from winger Courtnall Skosan. Two late tries to the Reds added a bit of respectability to the score but the damage had been done, the Lions running out convincing 44-14 winners.
SHARKS 19 KINGS 17
The Southern Kings travelled to Durban to take on the Sharks in what many viewed as a potential walkover for the home side. The Kings however came ready to play, keeping the match tight all the way and fighting their way to only a two-point deficit with two minutes to go.
Former Brumby Lionel Cronje had a last gasp penalty shot to steal the victory but it was not meant to be, the Sharks managing to hold on for a 19-17 victory.
JAGUARES 41 CHEETAHS 14
The in-form Cheetahs made the trip to Buenos Aires to take on the Jaguares in the last Super Rugby match of the weekend. The Jaguares scored early and therefter ran away with proceedings, running out to a 24-7 lead at halftime following three well worked tries.
The second half was once again one way traffic, the home side running in a further two tries to come away with a comprehensive 41-14 victory over their South African rivals.